Best of Grimms – The Creative Toy shop
The lovely Lizzie from Kids Gifts and Toys has written a fantastic Grimm's guide featuring some of our favourite items. If you don't know where to start or what item should be your first Grimm's purchase, Lizzie has you covered.
Check out Lizzie's Instagram @kidsgiftsandtoys to see more of her beautiful reviews.
It is hard to know where to start when buying a toy for your child’s birthday. What is popular, what is this year’s must have toy, what are all the cool kids playing with? However, instead of thinking in terms of popularity, maybe we should think in terms of longevity?
When I buy a toy I look at it in terms of how long will the child play with the toy, does it allow for open ended play, is it able to be passed down to a sibling or cousin and is it made of sustainable materials?
Toys that are open ended allow for creativity and imagination in a child. One day the child may use the toy as a garage for their cars, the next day a home for their dolls, or even the day after a treehouse for their animals?
Children get bored with toys easily and parents get frustrated they have spent their hard earned money paying for something the child no longer wants to play with or even worse, has broken.
The solution, you may have to invest a little bit more financially to start with but in doing so, your child will learn to imagine, create and be entertained and you won’t have any broken bits or have your child asking for “more batteries please Mum”!
I am of course talking about wooden toys. Wooden toys by their very nature allow open ended play, think of wooden blocks, wooden peg dolls or even wooden kitchen toys; as they don’t make any noise, the child then needs to imagine what a toaster might sound like.
Wooden toys also have a sense of calmness to them, when a child touches the wood, it is soft and smooth; it isn’t made of hard plastic with sharp edges nor does it have lights, bells and whistles. You are already creating a more peaceful environment for the child to learn and the child doesn’t need to compete or be heard over the high level noise of battery operated toys.
We have always had a mix of wooden toys in our household but I can honestly tell you apart from Lego and Playmobil, that wooden toys are the ones that provide hours of entertainment. My sons can play with their wooden train set for days on end and when a wooden rainbow stacker is added into the mix, that adds even more hours of fun. They build cities with their wooden blocks and add their hot wheels cars in to make garages or a stacker to build tunnels and underground caverns.
If you let your child create and truly imagine with their toys then it opens up a world of whimsy and wonder that is unbeatable.
Here are some of my favourite age appropriate open ended wooden toys from The Creative Toy Shop.
Baby - Bead Grasper
Age 1+ Seven Friends in Bowls
Age 3+ Wooden Cars